Listen, I know that the most beautiful thing about me is suppossed to be my heart. Love, humility, compassion, kindness, forgiveness, thoughtfulness, and peace are suppossed to reside there. But the truth is that I have not exactly been tending to the proverbial garden. Because of this, things like hatred, jealousy, anger, worry, greed, and selfishness have grown like jack and the beanstalk.
How do I know?
Because of all the things that I could focus on, I am choosing to obsess over a bad hair color.
In a matter of two hours I went from being an over processed (but happy) blonde to a DARK brunette.
The blonde hair helps lighten up my cynical Sylvia Plath like nature.
I arrived late at work with wet, dark hair and tried not to air my bad attitude. Inevitably, I practically stood on the bar holding a live broadcast about my “bad hair day.”
I know that with the title “yoga instructor” comes all these expected platitudes and attitudes (get it Dr. Seuss), but I’m human.
Someone said a few months back that your ego is wrapped up in your hair. I would argue that my ego just needs a safe place to rest, and my hair follicles are as good a place as any.
While I was working, I tried to remember what is important in life. My dogs, dark chocolate, a good therapist, and community. But I realized that what is important to me is also to have a damn good hair cut and color. As I meditated on these things, I felt my face get hot and my hair get darker.
I thought about all the women I know who have short hair, no hair, or rapidly graying hair. I thought Pema Chodron mostly. People LOVE her. But it’s not because she is a smokin’ hot blonde. It’s because life has seasoned her like a tender piece of pork (I know, I think it’s a strange metaphor too) and taught her that what matters is how well you love yourself and others, how you react to what life gives you, how you forgive those who hurt you, how you ask for forgiveness for those you have hurt, how you deal with matters of the heart.
What is worse, is that as I sat in the chair with foils on my hair darkening my spirit and my strands, I was reading in Whole Living about women have aged well and the lessons they have learned. And I was all,
“Yeah. That’s the kind of woman I want to be. Graceful, gray, joyful, loving, and not willing to sweat the small stuff.”
I was so inspired and sure that I could approach the world with the same attitude. And then…THE FOILS CAME OUT.
When I first started practicing yoga, I heard
“You are the sum total of your reactions.”
I remember thinking that I loved how nicely that sounded and that other people should really work on their reactivity.
Clearly, I have a lot to learn.